Individuals wishing to apply for a either a Public Accountant Audit Licence (Audit License) or a Public Accountant License (Review License) in Nova Scotia must fulfill the requirements outlined in the Public Accountants Act of Nova Scotia (the Act). Pursuant to the Act all licencees must be members of a professional accounting body designated by the Public Accountants Board of Nova Scotia (currently the Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia (CPANS)). Applicants must also be certified by the designated body to be eligible for a license from the PABNS.      The PABNS Standards, which are may be found in the Documents section of this web site, outline all the other requirements that need to be fulfilled to be approved for licensure.  Details of the certification process by CPANS may be found on their website.

An individual issued a Public Accountant Auditing Licence may perform any of the acts and functions involved in the practice of public accounting as defined in the Act.  An individual issued a Public Accountant Licence may perform any of the acts and functions involved in the practice of public accounting other than an audit engagement as set out in the applicable section of the CPA Canada Handbook-Assurance.

There is now a two tier license structure in Nova Scotia with the Public Accountant Auditing Licence tier permitting the licensee to perform both audits and review engagements, and Public Accountant Licence tier allowing the licensee to perform only review engagements.

Prior to submitting an application for licensure, Applicants must apply for certification through CPANS.

Once certified, Applicants must complete the appropriate application form, have it notarized, and submit it along with a copy of the certification documentation, either by mail or electronically to the address found on the application form.  Fees may be paid through PayPal using the box at the bottom of this page, or by cheque payable to PABNS.  Those Applicants who reside outside of Nova Scotia must also complete an “Out of Province Affidavit”, found on this page, to substantiate their intention to practice public accounting in Nova Scotia.

Qualified persons may apply for a license.  The license fee is payable through PayPal or cheque, payable to The Public Accountants Board Of The Province Of Nova Scotia. Persons who are members of professional accounting bodies must also submit a letter of good standing from their association.

If you do not hold yourself out to be a Public Accountant you do not need to be licensed to perform the following functions:

Accounting, Bookkeeping, Tax, Management Consulting, Computer Consulting

Stakeholder Communication

(Please read prior to completing application forms)

Public Accountant Licence Application Form

Public Accountant Auditing Licence Application Form

Out of Province Affidavit (if applicable)


The Public Accountants Board of Nova Scotia is a regulatory licensing body and whose licensees must be members in good standing of a designated body. Currently the only designated body in Nova Scotia is the Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia (“CPANS”).  Consequently the first step in obtaining a public accounting license in Nova Scotia is to obtain membership with CPANS. Further information, including contact details are available through their website:

Please use this form if submitting online payment for your application.

Applicant name: